Turkey’s forthright response to EU


TURKEY on Thursday dismissed a European Parliament vote backing a freeze in accession talks with Ankara as having ‘no significance’ and lacking vision. Reacting to adoption of a non-binding motion on the issue by the European Parliament, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the EU should understand and decide whether it wants to shape its future vision with or without Turkey.
EU might have its own reasons to initiate moves on freeze but on the face of it the development amounts to crude intervention in internal affairs of a sovereign State. The move comes amid heightened tension between Turkey and the EU as Brussels criticises Ankara’s crackdown in the aftermath of the July failed coup bid. Opposition to measures being adopted by the Turkish Government to ward-off future threats to democracy also exposes claims of the EU about its commitment to democracy. Turkey has every right to go for measures to safeguard its democratic system and democratic institutions and in fact this should have been welcomed by the EU and other members of the international community. Turkey has started crackdown against groups considered by it as terrorists and same is done by members of the European Union whenever any of its member comes under terrorist attack. Some Western countries have even gone to the extent of initiating highly provocative and discriminatory steps against Muslims as a community on the pretext of terrorist incidents. In fact, some members of the EU do not want a Muslim country in their fold and that is why roadblocks after roadblocks are erected ever since Turkey formally applied for EU membership in 1987. We believe that Turkey is a rising power and it has the capability, potential and resolve to carve out a place of prominence in the comity of nations with or without EU membership. It ought not to seek membership of an organisation at the cost of erosion of its national and Islamic identity.